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If your DC sucked their thumb...

(32 Posts)
FatLittleWombat Wed 05-Apr-17 06:31:24

I'd love to hear about your experience!
DS2 has started sucking his thumb and I've had nothing but negative comments about it. He's 7 months now and it's really helped with sleep. It seems like a positive habit so far. I know it's bad for teeth and language development if they suck their thumbs for too long, but it is really such an awful habit that's impossible to break? What is your experience with your thumb sucking DC?

Daisy17 Wed 05-Apr-17 08:28:42

My DS (now nearly 6) sucked his thumb from very early on. It was a massive help with his sleep and general comfort as he was quite highly strung! It gradually fell away, he doesn't even suck it when falling asleep now. No teeth or speech issues. I was exactly the same. I say just let him!

steppemum Wed 05-Apr-17 08:33:40

I sucked my thumb, and continued until I was about 13. I completely distroyed my adult front teeth, they stuck out badly and I had to have a lot of orthodontic work as a teen.
No speech issues though

mousymary Wed 05-Apr-17 08:36:00

Dd was an extreme thumb sucker until about 7 years old. No teeth issues whatsoever!

AllMyBestFriendsAreMetalheads Wed 05-Apr-17 08:46:32

I was a thumb sucker, I did have to have braces but I don't know how much impact my thumb sucking had.

DD has never sucked her thumb nor had a dummy, and her bottom adult teeth are coming through a little wonky, but we'll have to wait and see.

Sewingbeatshousework Wed 05-Apr-17 09:05:48

My DD started sucking her thumb as a small baby, which enabled her to self settle. She's now 8 and still does it out of habit but quickly realises and takes it out (she thinks it's babyish so is trying to stop). The dentist advised her to stop last year as her teeth were starting to push out but I've never actively tried to discourage her. If she had a 'blanky' for comfort I wouldn't take that off her...

Nephew stopped sucking his thumb Age 12, he's now 14 and was due to get braces but his teeth have actually re-aligned themselves.

Branleuse Wed 05-Apr-17 09:25:45

my 9year old still sucks her thumb. Weve been trying to get her to stop forever but no chance. She is very comforted by it. She has a pronounced overbite from it and will probably need braces, but then again my other children either have or will need braces too and they didnt suck their thumbs.

AnneOfCleavage Wed 05-Apr-17 09:45:13

DD sucked her thumb from 2-3 mths old - it really helped with self soothing and I was not at all bothered. Dentist said to try to discourage from approx age 5 because of teeth issues so we weaned her off with no real problems towards the end of year R/ early year 1 (Summer born) - bribed with toys etc but also didn't worry if she relapsed as it had to come from her wanting to stop and she did.
Never had any speech problems but she did have a high curve to her top teeth but that realigned as the years went on and now a pre-teen it's back to normal and the dentist is thrilled with her teeth.

Toddlerteaplease Wed 05-Apr-17 09:55:25

My sister is 34 and still sucks hers when she's tired. I sucked my fingers till I was 12z we both had braces but teeth all fine now.

Babytalkobsession Wed 05-Apr-17 10:00:43

My baby does it, he's 9 months. I'm not worried as he only does it for nodding off, not constantly sucking

INeedNewShoes Wed 05-Apr-17 10:01:42

I sucked my thumb as a child. I definitely didn't have language issues but my top front teeth have a terrible overbite that wasn't corrected and now I can't afford to have the work done.

If my DC suck their thumb I'll probably try to stop it.

FatLittleWombat Wed 05-Apr-17 20:39:42

Thanks for your replies everyone! I went to the GP this afternoon and he gave me a real lecture about how bad thumb sucking is (I didn't ask, he saw DS sucking his thumb.) I never expected to get all these negative reactions! My sister sucked her thumb until she was 9 and never had any problems, so it never occurred to me that people would see it as such a bad thing. It's good to see some positive posts on here!

If she had a 'blanky' for comfort I wouldn't take that off her...
That's how I see it too. A blanky doesn't have any negative side effects of course, but I still wouldn't want to deprive him of the comfort his thumb gives him.

PuntCuffin Wed 05-Apr-17 20:43:01

DS 1 sucked his thumb from about 8 weeks. It was a lifesaver as he didn't sleep before he found his thumb.
He agreed to stop when he was 6, got up on his 6th birthday and has never put his thumb in his mouth since. He is now 12 and has lovely straight teeth, no sign of impending orthodontics.

OllyBJolly Wed 05-Apr-17 20:46:06

DD2 was a thumb sucker from birth - and probably before. I would paint her thumbnail with anti nail biting stuff and she would furiously suck it off. She was the happiest, jolliest baby and child so it wasn't a nervous thing - but it was constant.

She broke her arm aged 8 and physically couldn't get her hand to her mouth. That broke the habit. If it hadn't been for that she would probably still be thumb sucking now. Her teeth were very misshapen which resulted in a lot of orthodontic treatment.

DorotheaHomeAlone Wed 05-Apr-17 20:55:30

I'm surprised to hear that from your GP. We saw dentist last month and he had no worries about my thum sucking 2 yo. Her teeth are already slightly pushed out but he said to leave it for now and gently discourage when she's a little older. No problem as long as she stops before second teeth come through.

mistressploppy Wed 05-Apr-17 20:59:27

Both of mine suck(ed) their thumbs. When DS1 was 5yo, we got a silicone 'Dr Thumb' thumb guard thingy, told DS he'd get a present once he'd stopped, all sorted in two weeks. I'll be doing the same for DS2 in a few months.

Both of them were great sleepers from an early age and I'm sure it's partly down to the thumb!

Algebraic Wed 05-Apr-17 21:03:32

I sucked my thumb until I was 12 (blush). I had to have a brace on my top teeth and still have an overbite but I don't feel it's noticeable. I also have a lisp, though unsure if that's related as my brother has a slight one too and has never thumb sucked as far as I know.

I found it deeply comforting and had a strong emotional attachment to it.

MercuryInTransit Wed 05-Apr-17 21:07:31

Everyone from the milkman to my teachers scowled at me and lectured me to stop sucking my thumb. My memories of childhood were of critical interfering adults telling me off.

I wish I'd been given a dody.

I have terrible bite and a raised palate because of it.

Get him a dody.
Paint his thumb with that nail stuff. It will save him from all kinds of unkind comments. That doctor was just the start of the comments. Imagine it 1000 times worse when he can understand what people are saying.

And yes, they should mind their own business, but they rarely do, do they?

Get him a dody, or a blanket.

Looneytune253 Wed 05-Apr-17 21:11:42

My daughter started sucking her fingers when we took her dummy away. Typical. Anyway, she did it till she was about 5. Teeth have come through now and are fine.

KanyesVest Wed 05-Apr-17 21:13:51

Da is 4.8 and has been sucking his thumb since he realised he has it. He loves it and it was a great self soother. He had a posterior tongue tie that wasn't diagnosed until 6months and the consultant told me he sees lots of babies with tongue tie who suck their thumb. It's possibly to do with having a very high palate (Ds does) and rubbing it with the thumb pad (Ds does) in the way a non tied tongue does but a tied tongue can't. Anyway, my brother is 40 and sucks his thumb when he's tired. We'll see how ds is over the next few years and figure out what to do.

Handsupbabyhandsup Wed 05-Apr-17 21:20:39

My twins sucked their thumbs. They were crazy suckers and had thumbs in 24/7. Teeth don't seem to be affected however speech was (you can't talk with a thumb in your mouth) and they both acted like one armed people for a long time. So I think it was very damaging for them.

We used thumb guards during the day and socks taped over hands at night to break the habit. They had been teased enough at that point to want to give up but it was hard for everyone involved.

But I can't see how we could have stopped them thumb sucking. You can't discourage something that is attached to them.

IToldYouIWasFreaky Wed 05-Apr-17 21:20:53

I sucked my thumb until I was about 12 and the way I sucked it badly affected my teeth. The front ones were pushed forwards and the bottom ones backwards. I had a lot of orthodontic work for years in my teens which was painful and uncomfortable.
Since then, my teeth have moved back and the upper two are really overlapped. I hate them. It makes me really self conscious. To fix it now would cost thousands of pounds and it's just never going to be possible.
I was told to stop when I was a child and I did try but it took
having a plate fitted that meant I physically couldn't get my thumb in my mouth. I really, really wish the habit had been broken a lot earlier.
I was so glad that DS had a dummy that we could take away when he was old enough. I would really try to prevent any child of mine from thumb sucking. Not sure how you do that with a 7 month old though! But definitely try when he's older

Yogagirl123 Wed 05-Apr-17 21:24:26

I sucked my thumb, ds2 also sucked his thumb, he was sucking his thumb in my womb, it could be seen clearly on the scan, so of course he just carried on. He also had a blanket. He's a teen now, his teeth are perfect, it's a habit that they grow out of. I really wouldn't worry about it.

neversleepagain Wed 05-Apr-17 21:53:55

I have twins who are 4.5 and both thumb suckers. They suck their thumbs when they are tired and in bed. Both have no teeth issues, dentist hasnt picked up they're thumb suckers. No speech problems either, they started talking and never stopped.

FatLittleWombat Thu 06-Apr-17 11:50:21

Mercury is a dody another word for dummy? If so, he did have one but refused it about 2 months after starting to suck his thumb.

No problem as long as she stops before second teeth come through. this is good to know, thank you!

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